Hole in the World

Rhodes, Richard. A Hole in the World: an American Boyhood. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1990.

Have you ever walked across really, really hot sand in your bare feet? There you are, stinging and ouching all the way across the incredibly hot terrain. But! It’s a pain you don’t want to give up because of where you are and where you going. Your destination is that blissful blanket by the sea and it will be lovely (why else are you there?). You know the pain will only last as long as you as are hot-stepping across the sand. That brief agony is the way I felt about Hole in the World by Richard Rhodes. It was unpleasant reading, even hurtful reading but I couldn’t put it down. I wanted to get to the good part, that blanket, if you will. It’s the story of Richard Rhodes growing up in an abusive household.  I know he heals from his traumatic childhood. I know the abuses he suffered didn’t last forever. There is light at the end of the dark tunnel of boyhood. But, it is a book worth reading. His words haunted my heart long after I put it down.

Favorite dangerous line, “I was tickling a dragon’s tail” (p 170).

Reason read: April is National Child Abuse Prevention month.

Author fact: Richard Rhodes went on to write The Making of the Atom Bomb for which he was awarded a Pulitzer Prize.

Book trivia: Heads up vegetarians and animals lovers! There is a decent-sized section dedicated to the description of the slaughter of farm animals. It’s graphic and detailed but nothing disturbed me more than when Rhodes is forced to kill a cat.

BookLust Twist: From More Book Lust in the chapter called “A Holiday Shopping List” (p 116).

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